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The crypto industry has been seeing major growth throughout 2021, leading Bitcoin, as well as many other coins to their ATHs. So, while it has definitely been a good year for crypto, there is still no indication that the market is losing its bullishness.
With that said, there are still plenty of opportunities to be found, if you know where to look. In order to help you out, we looked into the current trends, as well as the ones that the experts believe will rule the next year. After that, we also looked into some of these trends’ coins with the greatest potential, which led us to create a list of the top 7 coins that have the potential to bring back major gains, if the experts are correct.
1) Axie Infinity
One of the projects with the best chances to see impressive levels of growth is Axie Infinity (AXS). This is a play-to-earn game that was built on Ethereum’s blockchain, and one of the best ones — if not THE best — blockchain-based games available today.
The game allows users to collect NFT-based monsters, raise them, and use them for battling other players. They can also be sold, bought, and traded on 3rd-party marketplaces. If you wish to battle, however, you will need to own at least three Axies — NFT-based monsters. The battles will reward the winning player with the experience points, but also other types of rewards.
Apart from buying Axies in marketplaces, users can also breed them in order to create brand new, unique monsters that they can help grow and use later. They can also be improved and made stronger.
As for why we believe that Axie Infinity can make your investment yield major gains, it has to do with the fact that the game is actually allowing users to make a profit by earning revenue. To understand its potential, note that the game already brought $342 million in August of this year, and an additional $220 million in September.
The only question, however, is whether or not it can remain popular. After all, there are now countless metaverse and NFT-based projects in development, with some already out, or on their way to launch, so Axie Infinity will be facing plenty of competition.
To learn more visit our Investing in Axie Infinity guide.
2) Shiba Inu
The next on our list is Shiba Inu, a memecoin inspired by Dogecoin and its success. While Shiba Inu was inspired by DOGE, it has made a lot of progress when it comes to coming out of its shadow. A few weeks ago, SHIB even saw a surge that allowed it to heavily outperform DOGE in terms of market cap, and therefore rank on the list of largest cryptos.
However, due to its massive supply, the price per individual coin remained quite a bit below DOGE. In fact, many have pointed out that there is not enough money in the world to make SHIB’s price go to some impressive heights, at least not unless a significant portion of the coin gets burned.
However, even while SHIB cannot exactly reach $1, it still did shed plenty of zeroes when its price went from $0.000000000073 in January of this year to $0.000037 per token as of Dec. 8. A lot has happened to push SHIB, including numerous listings on a variety of exchanges, the launch of ShibaSwap DEX, FOMO, as well as a fair amount of coin burning.
To learn more visit our Investing in Shiba Inu guide.
Next up, we have Solana (SOL), which has skyrocketed this year, going from $1.61 to $191 per token as 2021 continued to progress. The main reason behind the coin’s growth is the growing popularity of its blockchain.
As many are likely aware, Ethereum has seen massive problems with scalability this year. As the DeFi and NFT sectors continued to grow and attract users, Ethereum’s network has grown to be busier than ever. Unfortunately, the coin’s inability to scale resulted in some rather high fees, which the team did try to address, although with little success.
As a result, many have started turning to faster blockchains, with Solana being at the very top of the list. Since then, the project has started seeing a lot of new dApps, DeFi protocols, and NFT projects launch on it, thanks to its proof-of-history protocol.
To put Solana’s speed into perspective, we should point out that it is more than twice as fast as Visa. Visa can handle 24,000 transactions per second, while Solana can do 50,000 TPS. Thanks to its popularity among developers and users alike, we expect the demand for SOL to continue its growth in 2022, as well.
To learn more visit our Investing in Solana guide.
Avalanche (AVAX) is another rising star among cryptocurrencies, although this one is particularly focused on smart contracts. As such, it is something of a competitor to Ethereum itself, not unlike Solana. It allows developers to create smart contracts, and through them, decentralized apps, DeFi protocols, NFTs, and more.
Like Solana, Avalanche is also much, much faster than Ethereum, with its native cryptocurrency being used for both, the consensus mechanism and for paying transaction fees within the network.
A few months ago, the Avalanche Foundation also came to the idea of attracting new developers and users by launching the Avalanche Rush program, where $180 million was set aside to support any DeFi protocols that are deemed worthy of being backed by the project.
The initiative worked, and many well-known DeFi protocols, such as Aave and Curve were already attracted by it.
To learn more visit our Investing in Avalanche guide.
5) The Sandbox
Another crypto that definitely did not waste the opportunities that 2021 had brought is The Sandbox (SAND). At the start of the year, the SAND token was only worth $0.04. However, as the metaverse trend started to emerge, its price skyrocketed to $5, which means that, if you invested $10,000 on January 1st, you would have had over $1.4 million these days, in mid-December.
The hype around The Sandbox is not that different from the one that pushed Axie Infinity, with the only difference being that The Sandbox is about monetizing the metaverse, meaning that it doesn’t offer a regular blockchain-based game, but an actual 3D virtual environment. It can be viewed as a game, of course, and it also allows and even rewards those who are creating virtual worlds and interacting with their own world, or other ones.
After their creation, these worlds remain fully in the gamers’ possession like their own NFTs. The NFTs can be used within the game itself, but also on The Sandbox’s platform. They can also be taken to the marketplace where their owners can monetize them.
To learn more visit our Investing in The Sandbox guide.
Another major metaverse project — as well as one of the oldest ones, and therefore pioneers of this sector of crypto — is Decentraland (MANA). This project also saw a massive spike in activity this year, particularly in the final days of October, after Facebook decided to rebrand and take on a new name — Meta.
Doing so brought a lot of attention to the metaverse projects, and Decentraland immediately started seeing gains. The project started the year with the price of $0.082, and by November 25th, it climbed all the way up to a new all-time high of $5.90.
Decentraland also allows users to purchase digital plots of land and do whatever they want with them, including the creation of games, applications, and even businesses. Being one of the first projects to explore the possibilities of the metaverse, Decentraland is one of the most important projects in this sector, and likely the one without which the metaverse would not see as much progress as it did over the last few months.
To learn more visit our Investing in Decentraland guide.
Finally, we also believe that there is a reason to keep a close eye on Ethereum. After all, the project has been working on updating to Ethereum 2.0 for a long time now, and even the expectations alone pushed its price from $736 on January 1st to over $4,800, which currently serves as its all-time high.
In truth, Ethereum is one of the most important projects to ever be created, and also still the biggest development network in the crypto industry. Whether we are talking about smart contracts, dApps, DeFi, or NFTs, Ethereum is still the industry leader despite its technical limitations. If such limitations were to get removed by the ETH 2.0 upgrade, there is no telling how far this coin’s price might end up going.
There are certainly some great expectations, especially since Ethereum is also the network where all new trends are originating. For now, it remains the industry’s largest altcoin, and second-largest cryptocurrency by market cap, and as such, it definitely deserves to be under close watch.
To learn more visit our Investing in Ethereum guide.